This morning I read an article about the most meaningful brands in the world. By meaningful, it means brands that people actually care about. If these brands were to disappear off the face of the earth tomorrow, it would devastate their customers.
Lately, the telecom industry in Pakistan has been facing a lot of challenges, what with PTA regulations affecting sales, network quality issues, energy crises. With Mobile Number Portability, it’s become ever more easy for customers to jump ship as soon as they encounter degraded services.
Recently Mobilink has done large scale re-branding in an effort to reconnect with its customers. Desperate times call for desperate measures and this step was due from Mobilink since its customer base has shrunk from over 50% to 29%. But what’s important to note here, is that they’ve made an attempt at presenting their services as something more than a commodity to their customers.
While trying to cut costs and attempting to fight off the energy issue, Pakistani telecom operators also need to work hard on providing smart-solutions at affordable rates while maintaining product quality. These are essential for developing meaningfulness of their brands in the minds of customers. The fact that 120 million out of Pakistan’s total population of 180 million people are mobile phone subscribers is proof enough that our telcos have successfully done this already. But, in addition to this, they must remember that in today’s age when socializing and staying connected has become such an integral part of life, providing means to facilitate in these areas would add more meaning to their brand in the eyes of their customers.
They need to know how exactly their products affect customer lives. Whether its personal well-being that their customers expect or collective well-being. Whether it would suffice to cater to both, or just one.
Essentially, it’s about building customer trust and then sustaining it. You need to make sure that your customers would remain loyal and that can only happen if you mean something to them.